• Baden
    8.4k


    There's a clear ontological difference between God prima facie and Canada and the likes. Problem dissolved.
  • hachit
    203

    I invite you to tally all the contradictions that arise from these all being accepted - not to speak of how they can apply to an existing being!

    Omnipotent: "can" implies the ability to thus he may not do it but still has the ability to do it and yes he can make a rock so big he can't lift it, it is called hell because hell is a place were God has no power.

    Omnipresent : Thus if he can do anything he can be always everywhere without interfering with the order universe.

    Omnibenevolent: actually omnibenevolent means infinite benevolence and benevolence means. the quality of being well meaning; kindness.

    So we're are the contradicts because I haven't seen them.
  • Coben
    842
    When you say Canada, you do not mean the land,
    — Coben

    People say "Canada" and refer to the land all the time. When I say "I'm going to Canada," I'm saying that I'm going to a particular physical location on the Earth. I could give you that physical location by GPS coordinates, by latitude and longitude, etc.

    That's not the only thing that people can refer to by "Canada," but it's ridiculous to say that people don't commonly refer to physical locations, land, etc. by the names of countries, cities, towns, etc.
    Terrapin Station

    That's all you focused on in that post of mine? Yes, perhaps I should have written, you don't just mean the land. Ief you'd responded to, or perhaps read, the rest of the post you would see what I was getting at. The point is not what people are referring to, but as in the fucking context of the OP, the ontology of the abstractions. Yes, pantheists are referring to the universe when they say God, but does God exist. Does divine right? What was Texas during the war between Mexico and the US over that land? Did Texas exist? But lovely chance to remake a point made several times and ignore anything that might be interesting or tricky, oh outrages for no use person..
  • Theologian
    160

    I think Baden is on the right track, but not quite there.

    But first, an acknowledgement: "Canada," as others have observed before me, is simply a word. It's possible to define that word in ways that make the answer to the question anything from idiotically obvious (say, by geographic borders) to unutterably obtuse. I am going to try to motivate a general idea of what Canada is (if not a formal definition as such) that seems most meaningful to me.

    I will start with two premises:

    1. There are observable things that seem somehow related to Canada: Canadians, buildings, banknotes, geographic territories, and so on. I am going to refer to these as "Canadian things."

    2. Not only are these things real; so too are the relationships between them.

    Now consider an ant colony. One might say, as has been said of Canada, that no-one has ever seen an ant colony. Almost everyone has seen ants, and probably anthills too. Maybe most of us have also seen pictures of the more complex things that ants build if we happen to enjoy watching wildlife documentaries. All these we might call "ant colony things." No-one has ever seen an ant colony. Yet the concept of an "ant-colony" is clearly a useful one. It seems to organize all these individual observations into a meaningful whole.

    Baden says
    Canada is the type of thing that can exist by virtue of it being agreed to exist.Baden

    Our agreement (and in particular, the agreement of Canadians) that Canada exists is clearly an important organizing principle controlling how all the Canadian things (and in particular, the Canadians) interact with each other. Arguably, it is the central organizing principle. Without such a belief, they would not build the buildings that they do, respond to borders the way they do, print the banknotes that they do, and so on.

    But, I would argue, there is at least one sense in which Canada exists that goes beyond a mere consensual belief. Because all of these Canadian things interacting the way they do, there is a recognizable social, economic, and geographic system that we may call "Canada."

    So Canada is a real, physical thing that exists in much the same way that an atom, or a protein molecule, or an atmosphere exists: as an organized system of components. The same can be said of anything we encounter in the phenomenal world other than a fundamental particle.

    Of course, like an atmosphere, the exact boundaries of Canada (in anything other than the most literal sense) are very difficult to specify. To provide an exacting and completely comprehensive definition of what Canada is would be an enormously complex exercise in synthesizing disciplines as varied as sociology and geology. But that is not what this forum is about, and I think you get the general gist of what I am saying.

    As for what God is, that's easy:

    I am the one true God.

    No more need be said.
  • Metaphysician Undercover
    6k
    According to Wikipedia, "Canada is a country in the northern part of North America." It defines "country" in this way:
    A country is a region that is identified as a distinct entity in political geography. A country may be an independent sovereign state or part of a larger state,[1] as a non-sovereign or formerly sovereign political division, or a geographic region associated with sets of previously independent or differently associated people with distinct political characteristics. Regardless of the physical geography, in the modern internationally accepted legal definition as defined by the League of Nations in 1937 and reaffirmed by the United Nations in 1945, a resident of a country is subject to the independent exercise[clarification needed] of legal jurisdiction.[citation needed] There is no hard and fast definition of what regions are countries and which are not. — Wikipedia
    And this is how Wikipedia defines "political geography":
    Political geography is concerned with the study of both the spatially uneven outcomes of political processes and the ways in which political processes are themselves affected by spatial structures. Conventionally, for the purposes of analysis, political geography adopts a three-scale structure with the study of the state at the centre, the study of international relations (or geopolitics) above it, and the study of localities below it. The primary concerns of the subdiscipline can be summarized as the inter-relationships between people, state, and territory. — Wikipedia
    Go figure. But it might be easier to understand what God is
  • Shamshir
    747
    There is no God objectively, He only exists (arguably, but I hold atheism) if one believes in himGrre
    Wouldn't something have to objectively exist as a prerequisite, to be believed in?
  • Theologian
    160
    Wouldn't something have to objectively exist as a prerequisite, to be believed in?Shamshir

    "The logical picture of the facts is the thought."
    http://www.kfs.org/jonathan/witt/t3en.html

    To "believe in something" is merely to hold a picture in one's mind. The existence of a picture in and of itself does not imply that the picture corresponds to facts outside one's own mind.

    I can, after all, draw a picture of a dragon on a piece of paper. It does not follow from this that dragons objectively exist.
  • Shamshir
    747
    I can, after all, draw a picture of a dragon on a piece of paper. It does not follow from this that dragons objectively exist.Theologian
    Well, yes - it does follow.

    What does not follow is that they can be found outside in the street - which would be subjective.

    How do you conceive what does not objectively exist? It's void of even void.
  • Theologian
    160

    Clearly, every belief exists as a belief. But what then is a belief? Beliefs are propositional attitudes, and most beliefs, such as a belief in God or dragons, are propositional attitudes regarding the existence of other things (as Russell famously acknowledged, we can get into difficulties when a belief is a propositional attitude regarding itself... but that's a different problem).

    As for how we may conceive of that which does not objectively exist, I don't think we need to wind up with "a void of even void." We may, perhaps, simply paint a picture that recomposes many different real-world elements that we have encountered. Dragons, for example, recompose the elements of reptilian scales, cyclopean size, and so on. All of which exist, but the totality of which does not. That seems fairly reasonable to me.

    To say that that we cannot believe in that which is not objectively real creates all sorts of problems; the most obvious being what do we do when two different beliefs are flatly contradictory?

    Say, a belief in an all powerful, all knowing, and all benevolent God on the one hand; and a belief in pain and suffering on the other?

    Another, arguably even deeper problem you have just created is that if everything that can be believed in is automatically true, then all all propositions are true. Because all propositions are true and are only true, the only logic that is applicable for describing such a world is a monovalent logic in which all propositions are true, and all inferences are therefore valid.

    Therefore, according to the rules that you have set up, I can begin with any premise, know that that premise is true, and validly conclude from it that you are wrong... which will also be true.

    The moon is made of green cheese
    Therefore Shamshir is wrong.

    QED.
  • Terrapin Station
    12.5k
    That's all you focused on in that post of mine?Coben
    Yes. I tackle (what I consider to be) one issue at a time when responding.

    Yes, perhaps I should have written, you don't just mean the land.

    Sometimes people do just mean the land, though. It depends on the occasion, on what the person has in mind on that occasion.
  • Theologian
    160
    The sun is a paisley bumblebee,
    Crawling across my face.
    Therefore the moon is a rhubarb tree,
    Somewhere deep in space.
    Therefore Shamshir’s soundly right
    Therefore Shamshir’s wrong.
    Therefore we all get to sing
    This monovalent song.


    I only do words though. Perhaps someone else could provide the music? I know there's a creative thread around here somewhere...

    Actually now I do have a ditty in my head. Although I'm not entirely sure my subconscious didn't dredge it up from somewhere else. Though where, exactly, I have no idea... Plus I don't have the musical skills to write it down or do a recording I wouldn't be embarrassed to share with others...
  • Shamshir
    747
    But what then is a belief?Theologian
    A thing that outlines another thing, supposedly.

    Are beliefs propositional? To an extent, everything is - this statement being indicative of that.
    So why does it matter?

    We may, perhaps, simply paint a picture that recomposes many different real-world elements that we have encountered. Dragons, for example, recompose the elements of reptilian scales, cyclopean size, and so on. All of which exist, but the totality of which does not. That seems fairly reasonable to me.Theologian
    Again, I get your incentive.
    But I am inclined to repeat myself and say that the totality of it clearly exists, as the idea of dragons clearly exists. That it is not evident in the way that dogs are evident is irrelevant.

    To paint something, it is required that that something exists, otherwise as I noted - it is void of void.

    To say that that we cannot believe in that which is not objectively real creates all sorts of problems; the most obvious being what do we do when two different beliefs are flatly contradictory?Theologian
    I don't see a problem. Relativity allows for both beliefs to hold true.
    Jon ate the apple and Jon did not eat the apple, are equally right.

    You can't reference something that, for lack of a better word, isn't.
    So both beliefs reference something that is; that is objectively real.

    A neat trick you could employ here is "It is objectively real, that there is no objective reality".
    And what that self-defeating position shows, if I should stand by my earlier statements, is the flux of things. It confirms and denies itself, one after the other. That's natural; life kills and death births.

    Because all propositions are true and are only true, the only logic that is applicable for describing such a world is a monovalent logic in which all propositions are true, and all inferences are therefore valid.Theologian
    All propositions are true, but not only true. That's flux.

    The moon is made of green cheese
    Therefore Shamshir is wrong.
    Theologian
    Sure, in a way.
  • Theologian
    160

    You know, I've thought about it some more, and I can see that it is necessary for me to recant on something I said in my previous post. I said that:
    As for how we may conceive of that which does not objectively exist, I don't think we need to wind up with "a void of even void." We may, perhaps, simply paint a picture that recomposes many different real-world elements that we have encountered. Dragons, for example, recompose the elements of reptilian scales, cyclopean size, and so on. All of which exist, but the totality of which does not. That seems fairly reasonable to me.Theologian

    While I still stand by that - so far as it goes - I accept that it is not a wholly satisfactory response to the point you were making.

    Where I think I was more on point was in the observation that the world you're describing is one of monovalent truth, and in which all arguments are valid. I don't think you dispute this. Incidentally, that means my own argument form is automatically valid, and everything I'm saying is true. Therefore you're wrong.

    You say:
    A neat trick you could employ here is "It is objectively real, that there is no objective reality".Shamshir

    But that's not just a "neat trick:" it's a fundamental problem with your position. What you call "flux" I'm more tempted to call paradox. Except it isn't even a true paradox. If you're right, it automatically implies that you're wrong. But the fact that you're wrong does not in and of itself imply that you're right, because you could just be wrong for all the reasons I just explained. It's purely and simply a self-defeating proposition.

    It's the same as saying "All truths are relative." The most obvious problem with that being that merely by the use of the universal quantifier, "All," you have explicitly stated that this is not a relative, but universal truth. Again, it's self defeating.

    I think that the nub of the matter is here, when you say:

    To paint something, it is required that that something exists, otherwise as I noted - it is void of void.Shamshir

    To show why this is problematic, suppose we take this all a little more literally, and think in concrete, physical terms. I don't accept that the act of pointing implies that something is there where you are pointing - except perhaps the "where" itself. So again, in a concrete, literal sense, you could just be pointing at an empty vacuum. Though you are, of course, entitled to observe that the vacuum itself could not exist without the space for it to be in, and that without that space, there is no "where" to point at.

    I would say that the set of all possible propositions constitutes logical space. I would also say that assigning a value of "false" to a particular space is analogous to vacuum. You're pointing at a space where there is nothing. It's not a "void of void." I'm not entirely sure that a void of void is an incoherent or otherwise problematic concept, but even if it is, I don't think that's a problem I need to deal with here. Because we're just talking about a regular void, a vacuum if you will. A value of "False" in a well defined logical space. We're all agreed that the space exists. It's just a question of what's in it.

    I began with an a priori analytic argument in which I pointed out that your position can only be self-defeating. But I would like to conclude with an a posteriori synthetic argument.

    Have you ever been... dare I say it... wrong? Have you ever, for example, gotten up to go to the fridge to get a drink, thinking that there was one there, only to discover that there... wasn't?

    Or gone down to the pub, thinking that they were open, only to discover that they were closed?

    Because... if anything like that has ever happened to you, it would seem that you do actually need something other than a monovalent algebra with which to accurately describe the reality in which you live.

    Incidentally... You ever play Mage: The Ascension?
  • Shamshir
    747
    Incidentally, that means my own argument form is automatically valid, and everything I'm saying is true. Therefore you're wrong.Theologian
    Could be. Could be that it's the opposite.
    But to be possibly either, it has to be both - is the absurdity I'm espousing.

    So to me, we're both right in a way - and we're both wrong in a way.
    Certainly, I understand the validity of every comment I am dissentive towards, if based on the author's meaning - though my vehemency masks that, and that's part of the game; the whole flux-crux-back-and-forth. It'd be awfully boring, and I believe incomprehensible, if I should be solely right - as then everything is nulled to a still frame, and it'd be kind of impossible for me to propose anything.

    So yeah, in a way I'm wrong; I would have to be.

    But that's not just a "neat trick:" it's a fundamental problem with your position. What you call "flux" I'm more tempted to call paradox.Theologian
    As aforementioned, I get it - based on your perspective, but your paradox is not paradoxical to me.
    I've reconciled every paradox I've come across, so I'm neither livid nor avid of them.

    Here's another something: Take an object, make that object move in all directions with equal speed and that object won't move. The object is both moving and not moving. That's a subtle flux, one that applies to that 'neat trick'.

    Going back to that 'neat trick':
    Everything being objective allows for everything to be subjective by consequence; so the statement is just a trick of perspective, asking whether you view the whole or the sum of the parts.
    When you outline one, you inadvertently outline the other, with the same outline.
    Remove the distinction and the homogeneous relationship dissipates.

    Because I'm possibly a bad illustrator, try and think of it through the whole 'wavelength and particle' idea.
    Maybe that explains it better.

    I began with an a priori analytic argument in which I pointed out that your position can only be self-defeating. But I would like to conclude with an a posteriori synthetic one.Theologian
    Not only self-defeating. But sure enough that's half of what it is, consequent of the other half.

    Have you ever been... dare I say it... wrong? Have you ever, for example, gotten up to go to the fridge to get a drink, thinking that there was one there, only to discover that there... wasn't?Theologian
    Have I been wrong? In a way, to this day.
    Have I gotten up to go to the fridge to get a drink, thinking that there was one there, only to discover that there...wasn't? Not that I can remember, no.

    I'm a fumbling child, and that's my dance.

    Incidentally... You ever play Mage: The Ascension?Theologian
    Incidentally... no.
    But I might, now that you've mentioned it... got tips?
  • Theologian
    160
    got tips?Shamshir

    My only tip is that I'm referring to the old pen and paper role playing game from the 90's.

    Oh, and try it: you'll love it.
  • creativesoul
    6k
    Canadais going to defeat the Warriors.Grre

    :eyes:
  • creativesoul
    6k
    It's the same as saying "All truths are relative." The most obvious problem with that being that merely by the use of the universal quantifier, "All," you have explicitly stated that this is not a relative, but universal truth. Again, it's self defeating.Theologian

    It would be self-defeating if being relative and being universal are mutually exclusive. They are not always. Depends entirely upon how one is using the terms "truths" and "relative".

    Meaning is relative to language use. Truths(on some views) are a product thereof.
  • Matias
    75
    Wrong. "Canada" is not just a name for a piece of the world 'out there'. Your argument would be valid if I had used "Stuart Lake" or "Mount Robson" instead, because these are objects to which we have attached a name, just as we call a certain molecule "salt". - -
    But "Canada" is not a piece of land, it is above all a fairly complex set of *institutions*, therefore it is an institutional fact, just like "US Dollar". There is no objective reality *out there* that corresponds to these institutions, unlike salt or Mount Robson which exist regardless of whether we think about it or have an intentional stance towards it or not.
    Unlike *brute facts* like salt or Mount Robson, institutional facts only 'exist' because there is collective intentionality.
    Put simply: if people cease to believe in an *institutional fact* is ceases to exist. "US Dollar" or "Canada" have no existence whatsoever outside this collective intentionality.
  • Terrapin Station
    12.5k
    Wrong. "Canada" is not just a name for a piece of the world 'out there'. Your argument would be valid if I had used "Stuart Lake" or "Mount Robson" instead, because these are objects to which we have attached a name, just as we call a certain molecule "salt". - -
    But "Canada" is not a piece of land . . .
    Matias

    So when people use "Canada" to refer to the physical extent of land (and buildings, trees, etc, on it), you just say what, that they're wrong to use the term that way?
  • Theologian
    160

    It's the same as saying "All truths are relative." The most obvious problem with that being that merely by the use of the universal quantifier, "All," you have explicitly stated that this is not a relative, but universal truth. Again, it's self defeating.Theologian

    It would be self-defeating if being relative and being universal are mutually exclusive.creativesoul

    I can't deny that that was an unstated premise of my argument. But I would assert that to say that truth is relative is precisely to deny its universality. At least in my experience, that is normally what it is taken to mean. See:

    https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/relativism/

    Would you accept that "no truths are universal" is a self defeating proposition?

    Can you find an example of an instance in which the assertion that truth is relative means something other than that it is not universal?
  • creativesoul
    6k
    Would you accept that "no truths are universal" is a self defeating proposition?Theologian

    I personally do not call true statements "truths". That's more a practice of logicians and those who do not draw and maintain the distinction between what sorts of things can be true and what makes them so. I find calling true statements and/or valid conclusions "truths" a bad habit. On my view truth is correspondence with what's happened and/or is happening, and it is presupposed within all thought/belief and statements thereof.

    The assertion "truth is relative" could be saying something along the lines of correspondence is a kind of relationship between thought/belief about what's happened/happening and what's happened/happening. If correspondence is a relationship, and all relationships are relative, and truth is correspondence, then truth is relative.

    I would have no issue at all with such a claim.

    However, it is quite often the case that when someone says "truth is relative" they are working from a conflation of truth and belief. Such talk is accompanied by saying things like "his truth", "her truth", "your truth", and "my truth"...

    I agree with you that "no truths are universal" can be self-defeating. Just not always.
  • Theologian
    160

    Hmm... I'm going to have to go think about that. I may get back to you.
  • creativesoul
    6k


    Sure.

    True statements are so regardless of whether or not any particular individual speaker believes them.

    With that in mind, some folk will say that truths(true statements) are universal, because they are true regardless of who utters them.

    As before, it all depends upon the terminological framework of the speaker.
  • Theologian
    160

    Well, one truth I'm going to utter right now is that I'm not familiar with all the terminology you're using, so I was planning on doing a search on some of it. I'm not going to take a position on something I'm not at least reasonably confident I understand. Feel free to elucidate further if you wish.

    Though right now another truth is that I'm kinda tired, so it's adios from me for a bit!
  • Matias
    75
    Don't be so obtuse. "Canda" is above all a set of institutions: a constitution (if this country has a constitution), a set of laws, administrations etc... And this instititutional "Canada" can then claim that a certain piece of land belongs to it. Other people or institutions can contest that claim (for example the Native Tribes living on that piece of land since times immemorial, or a neighboring country).
    The piece of land existed before Canda came into being, and it will exist if , say, Canada ceases to exist because they fusion with the USA.
    - When you read in the newspaper that "Canada is a member of NATO" or that "Canada is part of a trade agreement", or that "Canada beats the USA" (in sport), do you think that the rivers, mountains, hill, trees.... are doing this?
    Again: "Canada" is an institutional fact; the land with its rivers, trees and so on is secondary, because Canada in the sense of "Canadian piece of land" only exists because an institution called "Canada" exists. If the institution Canada disappears, the piece of land called Canada will disappear too, but not the brute facts: the trees, rivers, hills etc... they will revert to the status quo ante , what they have been before humans showed up and created an imaginary entity called "Canada".

    And if this example with Canada is too difficult for you and confuses you , rephrase my question in the OP: "What is the difference between God and the Euro ?" (you know: the currency in many countries in Europe)

    (It really seems to me that you have never heard about "institutions" or "institutional facts".
    That would be quite a gap in your philosophical education...
    https://yandoo.wordpress.com/tag/institutional-facts/
  • Terrapin Station
    12.5k


    You're ignoring the question I'm asking you.

    People can and do sometimes use "Canada" to refer to the land, where that's all they have in mind on those occasions. This is a fact. I'm an example of someone who does this. That land, the land that we're naming "Canada" in those instances, has a particular area (3.855 million mi²), a particular length of coastline (202,080 km), etc.

    You said this is wrong. So when we use "Canada" that way, you'd say that we're simply using the word wrong?
  • Shamshir
    747
    You said this is wrong. So when we use "Canada" that way, you'd say that we're simply using the word wrong?Terrapin Station
    I don't think he means to say that you're using the word wrong, but that what Canada references is separate from itself, as it seemingly cannot reference itself.
  • Terrapin Station
    12.5k
    but that what Canada references is separate from itself, as it seemingly cannot reference itself.Shamshir

    I don't understand what you're saying there, unfortunately.
  • Shamshir
    747
    That Canada does not equate the territory, just as how musical notes don't equate tones, even though that's what they refer to.

    Shell and filling.
  • EnPassant
    139
    If one assesses the evidence for Canada with intelligence the conclusion is that it must exist because its existence makes sense of the evidence. Likewise with God. God's existence is the most convincing answer to the available evidence.
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